A judge has granted class action lawsuits in a lawsuit against Apple over its controversial, allegedly flawed MacBook “butterfly” keyboard design, and agrees that owners of any affected model in seven states qualify for the class.
As of 2018, several MacBook owners in seven states filed lawsuits against Apple, claiming that the company knew that butterfly-style switches were flawed. In an order (PDF), published on Friday, Judge Edward J. Davila of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California agreed to grant class action status to the lawsuit. All customers living in California, New York, Florida, Illinois, New Jersey, Michigan or Washington, who purchased a 201
Butterfly-style keyboard design was controversial from the start. Apple designed it to be thinner and give a shorter return, which will save space inside the computer case and make typing faster. Some users hated the feel of it, while others loved it. The bigger problem, however, did not seem to be a preference, but rather one of the basic features: the thinner keys proved to be more prone to failure when used in the real world, as even small dust particles that accumulated around the switches could make ends meet. to work, and requires full replacement of the entire keyboard.
The plaintiffs in the lawsuit claim that Apple’s actions, as well as internal documents from the company, show that Apple knew that the design was defective. They claim that the company violated several states’ consumer protection laws as it continued to sell the defective products to consumers.
A 2018 report found that MacBooks needed keyboard-related fixes about 40 percent more often when Apple introduced the butterfly-style keyboard. Repeat repairs – keyboards that need an expensive second or even third repair – also increased significantly.
In June 2018, Apple acknowledged that butterfly switches caused problems, and the company launched a keyboard service program specifically to solve these problems. The program allowed affected MacBook owners to repair or replace the keyboard for free for the next four years, and some customers who had previously paid for these repairs were eligible for a refund.
In mid-2018, Apple only sold MacBook models with a butterfly keyboard. In 2019, however, Apple already monitored the keyboards in the MacBook Pro line, and by 2020, the company discontinued the butterfly keyboard completely from the entire range of laptops.